After harping on merchants forever about the importance of getting a signature for every transaction, we are about to change the rules. Well, it really isn’t Chosen Payments changing the rules as much as the card issuers such as American Express, Visa and MasterCard.
Effective this month, all four of the major credit card brands are dropping the requirement to obtain a signature for credit card transactions. This is largely due to increased security enhancements and the implementation of EMV “chip cards”. By now, every credit card in the hands of a consumer has been swapped out with an chip card. Almost all merchants have implements chip readers. Those merchants who have not implemented chip readers will be liable for fraudulent losses.
This will probably be very uncomfortable for most merchants to adapt. For our retail businesses, it will speed up your check-out lines as that signature step is eliminated.
The following are statements issued by the card brands:
“American Express today announced it is eliminating the requirement for merchants to collect Card Members’ signatures for all purchase transactions at the point of sale beginning in April 2018. The move, which applies globally to all American Express-accepting merchants, will help provide a more consistent and simplified checkout experience for merchants and Card Members in regions around the world, speed up the process of paying in store and help reduce merchants’ operating expenses associated with retaining signatures.”
“Visa is committed to delivering secure, fast and convenient payments at the point of sale,” said Dan Sanford, vice president, consumer products, Visa. “Our focus is on continually evolving the market towards dynamic authentication methods such as EMV chip, as well as investing in emerging capabilities that leverage advanced analytics and biometrics. We believe making the signature requirement optional for EMV chip-enabled merchants is the responsible next step to enhance security and convenience at the point of sale.”
“Did you know that more than 80 percent of Mastercard in store transactions in North America today do not require a cardholder signature at checkout? That number could now reach 100 percent after April 2018, when we will no longer require signatures at checkout for any credit or debit purchases in Canada and the U.S.”
“As the payments industry continues to evolve and introduce new methods of transacting, we’re making sure that Discover is providing customers and merchants with a smooth and more secure payments experience,” said Jasma Ghai, vice president of Global Products Innovation at Discover. “With the rise in new payment security capabilities, like chip technology and tokenization, the time is right to remove this step from the checkout experience.”